Faculty of the Month
April 2017 Faculty of the Month
Deaf Studies Division
He began his Ohlone life in 2005 as an adjunct counselor and became a full-time counselor in 2012. Besides counseling students, he also teaches Personal Development classes for Deaf students. He is Nan Zhou, Ohlone's Faculty of the Month for April 2017.
Nan works closely with Deaf students, who have their own unique language and culture. He says he is inspired by the stories they tell of their educational journeys and career paths. Since Ohlone is home to one of the largest and most comprehensive Deaf programs, many students travel long distances to attend classes. Nan understands the drive these students have and where they are coming from since his Deaf immigrant parents took American Sign Language (ASL) and English classes through the Ohlone Deaf program more than two decades ago.
In his dealings with Deaf students, Nan utilizes student services and community resources such as the Deaf Counseling Advocacy and Referral Agency and Workability III, to help serve these students. He also continues to help foster Ohlone's partnership with the California School for the Deaf as well as other Deaf programs in Bay Area and Sacramento public schools. In addition, he helps students transfer to Gallaudet University, the Rochester Institute of Technology, and California State Universities. And Nan works closely with one of Ohlone's sister colleges--the Japanese ASL Signer Society--and their annually sponsored international students.
Besides his counseling duties, Nan also serves on Faculty Senate, SSSP, and the International Education Committee. Nan says, "I am fortunate to have wonderful Ohlone folks to work with because of their dedication and leadership, so I don't think I could ever leave here."
Outside of Ohlone, Nan is busy. He formerly served as President of the Bay Area Asian Deaf Association (BAADA) and as Vice President of the National Asian Deaf Congress. Currently, he mentors young Asian Deaf leaders, many who are Ohlone alumni, for BAADA. He also is a storyteller for Deaf children at the Oakland Museum's annual Lunar New Year celebration.
Nan and his wife are the proud parents of two deaf children whom they recently adopted from China. He says that he and his wife enjoy their bonding time with their children, especially exposing them to the Bay Area's multicultural diversity. They are also a multi-lingual family, using ASL, Australian Sign Language (Auslan), and Chinese Sign Language (CSL). The last two languages are so the grandparents can communicate with their kids. Nan and his family enjoy traveling and learning about as many different global cultures and heritages as they can. They also spend time connecting with the local Deaf communities by visiting Deaf organizations and Deaf programs and by exchanging information at workshops. When he has the time, Nan's favorite diversion is road cycling. He says cycling connects him to the land and nature and inspires within him inner peace and spiritual joy.
Please help the Faculty Senate and the Professional Development Committee celebrate Nan for being a top-notch counselor, colleague, and involved global citizen. Congratulations, Nan!